Product Diversity

To support creative expression and diverse applications, works listed in our cooperative include full source code and the rights needed to make and distribute derivative works. Distribution and use of derivative works necessarily incorporate the licensing of predecessors and components. In this way, cooperative members have the ability to alter and remix existing products and components, sharing their derivative works in a manner respectful to prior investment. In particular, we do not limit the right to make a derivative work based upon field of endeavor or intended usage of the works.

Our approach is similar to Open Source Initiative (OSI) licensing, which includes the rights to make and distribute derivative works. Also, similar to OSI guidelines, we do not limit who can make derivatives or what those derivatives can be. Conversely, our approach is most unlike proprietary licensing, which typically reserves the exclusive right to make derivative works; or, if derivative works are permitted, restricts their distribution. Notably, Creative Commons’ restrictions on the creation of derivative works or commercial use is incompatible with our approach.

Equitable Market Pricing

Our licensing discriminates based upon application market. When a work is registered with the cooperative, a per-unit price is specified. As a baseline, our cooperative interprets each unit as per-seat license for professional workers in developed countries, such as teachers or doctors. However, not all markets have licensing scenarios that are so clear. Moreover, sometimes there are individualized circumstances that may need to be taken into account. Therefore, while creators can set their per-unit price, they do not have an individual say in what each licensing unit means; this decision is determined in a uniform manner by the cooperative, on a market-by-market basis. In this way we can provide the equitable pricing of compositional works whose components come from markets that don’t anticipate their reuse.

In this manner, our approach is similar to many proprietary licenses, where pricing is often based upon sensibilities of a given market. Indeed, each kind of market might have its own pricing guideline that are specific to the logistics of each given field. This approach violates the Open Source Initiative definitions since we require payment for distribution and usage, and, importantly, not all markets and fields of endeavor are treated equally. Even so, the goals of our market discrimination is to be inclusive while providing equitable revenue for creators.